Anishinaabeg

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A Two-Spirit Journey: The Autobiography of a Lesbian Ojibwa-Cree Elder
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Oji-Cree;
Grade Levels: 12; University/College;

A compelling, harrowing, but ultimately uplifting story of resilience and self-discovery.

A Two-Spirit Journey is Ma-Nee Chacaby’s extraordinary account of her life as an Ojibwa-Cree lesbian. From her early, often harrowing memories of life and abuse in a remote Ojibwa community riven by poverty and alcoholism, Chacaby’s story is one of enduring and ultimately overcoming the social, economic, and health legacies of colonialism.

As a child, Chacaby learned spiritual and cultural traditions from her Cree grandmother and trapping, hunting, and bush survival skills from her Ojibwa stepfather. She also suffered physical and sexual abuse by different adults, and in her teen years became alcoholic herself. At twenty, Chacaby moved to Thunder Bay with her children to escape an abusive marriage. Abuse, compounded by racism, continued, but Chacaby found supports to help herself and others. Over the following decades, she achieved sobriety; trained and worked as an alcoholism counsellor; raised her children and fostered many others; learned to live with visual impairment; and came out as a lesbian. In 2013, Chacaby led the first gay pride parade in Thunder Bay.

Ma-Nee Chacaby has emerged from hardship grounded in faith, compassion, humour, and resilience. Her memoir provides unprecedented insights into the challenges still faced by many Indigenous people.

Reviews
“From groundbreaking and controversial AIDS awareness programs in the 1990s to the work she continues to do today, both with her own family and her extended reserve family, her life and this memoir ultimately serve as handbook of hope.”— Lara Rae, Winnipeg Free Press

"A Two-Spirit Journey is a raw and emotional story that doesn’t just show readers the author’s scars. Chacaby bares all in an honest telling of her life that includes flaws, like her struggles with substance abuse and a sometimes rocky path to sobriety. Despite the turmoil, the autobiography does have its uplifting moments and characters. Heartwarming stories of childhood friendships, and most importantly a powerful relationship between the author and her grandmother, weave feelings of optimism and hope into a life that is oftentimes surrounded by darkness.”— Scott Paradis, tbnewswatch.com

“An extraordinary account of an extraordinary life and very highly recommended for community and academic library Contemporary Biography, LGBT, and Native American Studies collections.”— Midwest Book Review

“Activist, survivor, mother, counsellor, Ma-Nee Chacaby recounts her sometimes harrowing life with a calm and steady voice, infused with resilience and compassion. Effectively designed and edited to appeal to both the general public and those engaged in Indigenous studies, A Two-Spirit Journey presents an important story, powerfully told.”— Nik Burton, Rick Walker, and Carolyn Wood, Judges, 2017 Manitoba Book Awards

“The story that Chacaby and Plummer recount is truly an extraordinary one, but it is also one that will resonate with many people whose stories have not been often told. The perspective of a lesbian Ojibwa-Cree elder is invaluable for LGBT Native youth and will be an enriching experience for many others, particularly those who have experienced abuse, disability, poverty, or the effects of colonization.”— Kai Pyle, Studies in American Indian Literatures

Educator Information
This book would be useful for courses in women's studies, social studies, and gender studies.  Recommended for students in grade 12 or at a college/university level.

Caution: discussion of physical and sexual abuse.

Additional Information
256 pages | 6.00" x 9.00"

 

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Anishinaabeg Stories: Featuring Petroglyphs, Petrographs, and Wampum Belts
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg;

This code cracking book is written for people who wish to become culturally literate in the Anishinaabe worldview. This book is suitable for both Anishinaabeg and settler allies seeking greater understanding of a worldview, tradition, and knowledge philosophy once criminalized by the Canadian Government and consequently forced underground. It is also suitable for academics, both undergraduates and graduates, interested in gaining a deeper understanding of Indigenous governance traditions.

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Broken Circle: The Dark Legacy of Indian Residential Schools: A Memoir
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Sagkeeng;

Theodore Fontaine lost his family and freedom just after his seventh birthday, when his parents were forced to leave him at an Indian residential school by order of the Roman Catholic Church and the Government of Canada. Twelve years later, he left school frozen at the emotional age of seven. He was confused, angry and conflicted, on a path of self-destruction. At age 29, he emerged from this blackness. By age 32, he had graduated from the Civil Engineering Program at the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology and begun a journey of self-exploration and healing.

In this powerful and poignant memoir, Theodore examines the impact of his psychological, emotional and sexual abuse, the loss of his language and culture, and, most important, the loss of his family and community. He goes beyond details of the abuses of Native children to relate a unique understanding of why most residential school survivors have post-traumatic stress disorders and why succeeding generations of First Nations children suffer from this dark chapter in history.

Told as remembrances described with insights that have evolved through his healing, his story resonates with his resolve to help himself and other residential school survivors and to share his enduring belief that one can pick up the shattered pieces and use them for good.

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Chee Chee: A Study of Aboriginal Suicide
Authors:
Al Evans
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Ojibway;

Benjamin Chee Chee lived with anger and frustration for more than thirty years before he took his own life. An Ojibway artist who killed himself just as he was beginning to gain international recognition, Chee Chee is one of the thousands of aboriginal peoples in Canada who have committed suicide. Noted suicidologist and former RCMP officer Al Evans explores Chee Chee's wild, reckless, creative life to reveal how the clash between Native and White society has affected the suicide rate of young Native men and women, now among the highest in the world.

$24.95

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Claiming Anishinaabe: Decolonizing the Human Spirit
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg;
Grade Levels: 12; University/College;

Denied her Indigenous status, Lynn Gehl has been fighting her entire life to reclaim mino-pimadiziwin--the good life. Exploring Anishinaabeg philosophy and Anishinaabeg conceptions of truth, Gehl shows how she came to locate her spirit and decolonize her identity, thereby becoming, in her words, "fully human." Gehl also provides a harsh critique of Canada and takes on important anti-colonial battles, including sex discrimination in the Indian Act and the destruction of sacred places.

Reviews
Gehl is at the cutting edge with her concepts and ideas... She is on a journey and documents it well. — Lorelei Anne Lambert, author of Research for Indigenous Survival

Clear, insightful, and desperately needed... — Lorraine F. Mayer, author of Cries from a Métis Heart

The discussion of the heart and mind knowledge, as well as the discussion on the Anishinaabeg Clan System of Governance, [are] major contributions to the research. — Marlyn Bennett, co-editor of Pushing the Margins

"Throughout Claiming Anishinaabe, the conversation remains rooted in the destructive effects of oppressive power on the human spirit, and an insistence that both knowledge and spirituality are key in reclaiming one’s sense of self." — Quill & Quire

Educator Information
This book would be useful for the following subject areas or courses: Indigenous Studies, Canadian History (Post-Confederation), Social Science, Autobiography/Biography Studies, Spirituality, and Law.

Additional Information
176 pages | 5.50" x 8.50" | Includes line drawings

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Dangerous Spirits: The Windigo in Myth and History
Authors:
Shawn Smallman
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous American; Indigenous Canadian;

In the traditional Algonquian world, the windigo is the spirit of selfishness, which can transform a person into a murderous cannibal. Native peoples over a vast stretch of North America—from Virginia in the south to Labrador in the north, from Nova Scotia in the east to Minnesota in the west—believed in the windigo, not only as a myth told in the darkness of winter, but also as a real danger.

Drawing on oral narratives, fur traders' journals, trial records, missionary accounts, and anthropologists’ field notes, this book is a revealing glimpse into indigenous beliefs, cross-cultural communication, and embryonic colonial relationships. It also ponders the recent resurgence of the windigo in popular culture and its changing meaning in a modern context.

$19.95

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Earth Elder Stories
Format: Paperback

Alexander Wolfe is a Saulteaux/Ojibwa storyteller and the keeper of his family's oral history. These stories belong to his family and include accounts of how the descendents of Pinayzitt, a Saulteaux leader who lived in the Northwest Territories of Canada and the Great Plains of the United States in the 1800s, lived on the land, survived the smallpox and flu epidemics, signed treaties, and were confined to reservations.

The stories blend history with legend and prophecy, giving both the equal weight they occupy in Native oral tradition. In their retelling, Wolfe carries out his responsibility of passing on his family's stories to the next generation, as well as encouraging Natives to record their histories and non-Natives to understand the significance and lessons of these tales.

Earth Elder Stories has proven an excellent resource for students of Native Studies, history, linguistics, and literature.

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Everyday Exposure: Indigenous Mobilization and Environmental Justice in Canada's Chemical Valley
Authors:
Sarah Marie Wiebe
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Ojibway;
Grade Levels: 11; 12; University/College;

Surrounded by Canada’s densest concentration of chemical manufacturing plants, members of the Aamjiwnaang First Nation express concern about a declining male birth rate and high incidences of miscarriage, asthma, cancer, and cardiovascular illness. Everyday Exposure uncovers the systemic injustices they face as they fight for environmental justice. Exploring the problems that conflicting levels of jurisdiction pose for the creation of effective policy, analyzing clashes between Indigenous and scientific knowledge, and documenting the experiences of Aamjiwnaang residents as they navigate their toxic environment, this book argues that social and political change requires a transformative “sensing policy” approach, one that takes the voices of Indigenous citizens seriously.

Educator Information
This book would be useful for courses in Environmental Studies, Science, Social Justice, and Social Studies.

Additional Information
280 pages | 6.00" x 9.00" 

 

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$32.95

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Following Nimishoomis: The Trout Lake History of Dedibaayaanimanook Sarah Keesick Olsen
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg;

Northwestern Ontario was a very different place when Dedibaayaanimanook Sarah Keesick Olsen was born in Namegosibiing Trout Lake back in 1922. Raised in a close-knit Anishinaabe community that lived off the land, she was guided by her parents and extended family in the traditional teachings of her people. Over time, though, as their ancestral homelands in the Lac Seul–Red Lake region were overtaken by settlers, the Anishinaabe faced greater challenges in carrying out their customary ways of life.

A resourceful and competent young woman, Dedibaayaanimanook adapted to the new and ever-changing world around her. She met a European man and raised a family that shared the values of both their cultures. Following Nimishoomis recounts the life of this extraordinary woman.

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Indian Horse (Special Edition)
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Ojibway;
Grade Levels: 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; University/College;

Saul Indian Horse has hit bottom. His last binge almost killed him, and now he’s a reluctant resident in a treatment centre for alcoholics, surrounded by people he’s sure will never understand him. But Saul wants peace, and he grudgingly comes to see that he’ll find it only through telling his story. With him, readers embark on a journey back through the life he’s led as a northern Ojibway, with all its joys and sorrows. 

With compassion and insight, author Richard Wagamese traces through his fictional characters the decline of a culture and a cultural way. For Saul, taken forcibly from the land and his family when he’s sent to residential school, salvation comes for a while through his incredible gifts as a hockey player. But in the harsh realities of 1960s Canada, he battles obdurate racism and the spirit-destroying effects of cultural alienation and displacement. Indian Horse unfolds against the bleak loveliness of northern Ontario, all rock, marsh, bog and cedar. Wagamese writes with a spare beauty, penetrating the heart of a remarkable Ojibway man.

Awards

  • 2013 Burt Award for First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Literature
  • 2013 First Nation Communities Read Award

Reviews
"Richard Wagamese is a master storyteller, who blends the throb of life with spiritual links to the land, hard work, and culture to find success, his words take you into the soul of Indian Horse, to experience his pain, his growing resentments, his depression, and his fear which has to be faced if he is to regain the joy of life. This book is meant for youth, adults, and elders, to be shared, to be lived, and to be treasured for the clear message of hope and the need to go the distance." — Wawatay News

“…The hockey chapters are compelling; they evoke Sherman Alexie’s fiction that examines contemporary life on American Indian reservations through the lens of basketball. But it is as a story of reconciliation that this novel reveals Wagamese’s masterful subtly…In a single image, Wagamese complicates in blinding ways the entire narrative; in a single page, Indian Horse deepens from an enjoyable read to a gripping critique of Canada.” — Kyle Carsten Wyatt, The Walrus, 2012

Educator Information
Grades 10-12 BC English First Peoples resource for units on Lost People, Reconciliation, and Place-Conscious Learning.

Additional Information
232 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

This special edition of Richard Wagamese’s novel Indian Horse has been released to coincide with the release of the film Indian Horse in the spring of 2018.

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Indians Don't Cry: Gaawiin Mawisiiwag Anishinaabeg
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg;

George Kenny is an Anishinaabe poet and playwright who learned traditional ways from his parents before being sent to residential school in 1958. When Kenny published his first book, 1977’s Indians Don’t Cry, he joined the ranks of Indigenous writers such as Maria Campbell, Basil Johnston, and Rita Joe whose work melded art and political action. Hailed as a landmark in the history of Indigenous literature in Canada, this new edition is expected to inspire a new generation of Anishinaabe writers with poems and stories that depict the challenges of Indigenous people confronting and finding ways to live within urban settler society.

Series Information
Indians Don’t Cry: Gaawin Mawisiiwag Anishinaabeg is the second book in the First Voices, First Texts series, which publishes lost or underappreciated texts by Indigenous artists. This new bilingual edition includes a translation of Kenny’s poems and stories into Anishinaabemowin by Patricia M. Ningewance and an afterword by literary scholar Renate Eigenbrod.

Although most of the books in this series are non-fiction, this one is listed as fiction.

Additional Information
190 pages | 5.50" x 8.50"

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Keeping the Land
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Oji-Cree;

When the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug’s traditional territory was threatened by mining exploration in 2006, they followed their traditional duty to protect the land and asked the mining exploration company, Platinex, to leave. Platinex left — and then sued the remote First Nation for $10 billion. The ensuing legal dispute lasted two years and eventually resulted in the jailing of community leaders. Ariss argues that though this jailing was extraordinarily punitive and is indicative of continuing colonialism within the legal system, some aspects of the case demonstrate the potential of Canadian law to understand, include and reflect Aboriginal perspectives. Connecting scholarship in Aboriginal rights and Canadian law, traditional Aboriginal law, social change and community activism, Keeping the Land explores the twists and turns of this legal dispute in order to gain a deeper understanding of the law’s contributions to and detractions from the process of reconciliation.

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Law's Indigenous Ethics
Authors:
John Borrows
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg;
Grade Levels: 12; University/College;

Law’s Indigenous Ethics examines the revitalization of Indigenous peoples’ relationship to their own laws and, in so doing, attempts to enrich Canadian constitutional law more generally. Organized around the seven Anishinaabe grandmother and grandfather teachings of love, truth, bravery, humility, wisdom, honesty, and respect, this book explores ethics in relation to Aboriginal issues including title, treaties, legal education, and residential schools.

With characteristic depth and sensitivity, John Borrows brings insights drawn from philosophy, law, and political science to bear on some of the most pressing issues that arise in contemplating the interaction between Canadian state law and Indigenous legal traditions. In the course of a wide-ranging but accessible inquiry, he discusses such topics as Indigenous agency, self-determination, legal pluralism, and power. In its use of Anishinaabe stories and methodologies drawn from the emerging field of Indigenous studies, Law’s Indigenous Ethics makes a significant contribution to scholarly debate and is an essential resource for readers seeking a deeper understanding of Indigenous rights, societies, and cultures.

Reviews
"Law’s Indigenous Ethics addresses very controversial topics in Canada, not just in Indigenous legal studies, but far beyond that. John Borrows employs story work methodology, along with thorough legal research, ensuring that his work is truly leading edge. Law’s Indigenous Ethics will further advance Indigenous studies in Canada and beyond. Borrows’s work moves beyond the binary, divisive, and linear ideologies dominating the Indigenous intellectual landscape in Canada. He provides nuance, complicates dominate narratives, and gives the reader much food for thought and, more importantly, asks the reader to think, reflect, and embrace the principles embedded in the seven grandmother and grandfather teachings as a whole." -Deborah McGregor, Osgoode Hall Law School, Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Environmental Justice, York University

"Law’s Indigenous Ethics is extremely novel, important, and has the potential for great influence. Demonstrating tremendous expertise and fluency with its subjects, John Borrows’s arguments are sound and thoughtful, providing a number of important insights that lead me to adjust the way I think about issues that are very familiar to me." -Bethany Berger, Wallace Stevens Professor of Law, University of Connecticut

Additional Information
400 pages | 6.00" x 9.00"

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$39.95

Coming Soon
Living in the Tall Grass: Poems of Reconciliation
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg;
Grade Levels: 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; University/College;

“We should not have to change to fit into society the world should adapt to embrace our uniqueness.” -- Chief Stacey Laforme

In Living in the Tall Grass: Poems of Reconciliation, Chief Stacey Laforme gives a history of his Anishinaabe people through stories and poetry to let Canadians see through the eyes of Indigenous people. Living in the Tall Grass is written in a way that makes the reader feel he or she might be sitting down with Chief Laforme, sharing experiences from their lives. Some poems share humour, while others express pain, though each comes from the heart.

Reviews
"Laforme is a high-profile leader, attending scores of events, large and small in Ontario and gently reminding listeners that most of the southern part of the province is the traditional homelands of the Mississaugas of the New Credit. True to his belief in the longer-lasting impact of the arts, he’ll often open a speech with a verse. “The future lies in the arts, and it lies in all our youth, not just the Indigenous youth,” he says. “Arts make change … if we can share a moment through the arts whether its song, dance, poetry, painting, it transcends even language barriers." — Steve Milton, The Hamilton Spectator

Educator Information
Recommended for Grades 5-12 for English Language Arts.

Caution: Some poems touch on violence and suicide.

Themes: hope, the environment, Residential Schools.

Additional Information
160 pages | 5.50" x 8.50" | duotone photographs

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Medicine Walk (Wagamese) PB
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Anishinaabeg; Ojibway;
Grade Levels: 10; 11; 12; University/College;

By the celebrated author of Canada Reads Finalist Indian Horse, a stunning new novel that has all the timeless qualities of a classic, as it tells the universal story of a father/son struggle in a fresh, utterly memorable way, set in dramatic landscape of the BC Interior. For male and female readers equally, for readers of Joseph Boyden, Cormac McCarthy, Thomas King, Russell Banks and general literary.

Franklin Starlight is called to visit his father, Eldon. He's sixteen years old and has had the most fleeting of relationships with the man. The rare moments they've shared haunt and trouble Frank, but he answers the call, a son's duty to a father. He finds Eldon decimated after years of drinking, dying of liver failure in a small town flophouse. Eldon asks his son to take him into the mountains, so he may be buried in the traditional Ojibway manner.

What ensues is a journey through the rugged and beautiful backcountry, and a journey into the past, as the two men push forward to Eldon's end. From a poverty-stricken childhood, to the Korean War, and later the derelict houses of mill towns, Eldon relates both the desolate moments of his life and a time of redemption and love and in doing so offers Frank a history he has never known, the father he has never had, and a connection to himself he never expected.

A novel about love, friendship, courage, and the idea that the land has within it powers of healing, Medicine Walk reveals the ultimate goodness of its characters and offers a deeply moving and redemptive conclusion.

Wagamese's writing soars and his insight and compassion are matched by his gift of communicating these to the reader.

Reviews
"A masterpiece, a work of art that explores human interconnectedness with a level of artistry so superb that the personal becomes eternal."— National Post

"Wagamese balances the novel's spiritual and political subtexts with sly humour, sharp, believable dialogue and superb storytelling skills. Medicine Walk is a major accomplishment from an author who has become one of Canada's best novelists."—Toronto Star

This is very much a novel about the role of stories in our lives, those we tell ourselves about ourselves and those we agree to live by.... Medicine Walk is also testament to the redemptive power of love and compassion."—The Globe and Mail

Educator Information
Grades 10-12 BC English First Peoples resource for units on Childhood, Place-Conscious Learning, and Family.

Additional Information
256 pages | 5.21" x 7.99"

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